What does it mean to be free?
Resistance and popular rebellion is on the rise in the U.S. but our movement also needs vision. We are growing increasingly aware of the things of this world that we do not wish to carry forward, but there is a lack of consensus on the world that we are collectively creating. In short, we talk about wanting to get free, but do we really know what that means?
We are opening up our blog for folks to contribute the way that THEY define FREEDOM.
Participants can contribute written blog pieces of any length, poetry, video, photographs, or artwork to express their personal vision of freedom as we color in our collective vision of the future. Remember, you don't have to plot out the entire revolution, just contribute something to help pollenate our collective imagination.
Ex: "FREEDOM is learning our real history in public schools"
Ex: "When we are Free, gender roles won't exist"
Please submit content via the form below, and encourage others in your network to contribute as well!
Somewhere between war paint and minstrel face is me putting on my makeup I wake up after shutting down I-95 to go to my 9 to 5 living somewhere in between two lives I found myself knocking on a door of opportunity to a house I wanted to burn celebrating holidays to a history I wanted to unlearn pushing the wheel of a system that I wanted to turn I ask myself I challenge us all will we stop financing what we fight against watch an empire build as we just pay rent watch businesses grow and we just clock in face capitalism and we just spend and then we stand to protest or post on Instagram against a system we participate in somewhere between being in a die-in and dying in line for shoes we have to choose which side will lose Maybe we’re so focused on what we don’t want we don’t know what we do chastising so many choices that we don’t know which one to choose maybe all we need to be is the light in a dark room finance our own future work for our own welfare maybe we don’t need to burn down a house if we build our own maybe we don’t need to shuck and jive to make a living if we create our own maybe we don’t need to focus on others if we love our own Somewhere between the two is me waking up to a system that I don’t have to fight against nor be an active participant unguarded and ungoverned somewhere soon I see us building, creating, and loving our own somewhere between putting on war paint and minstrel face I find myself and we find our place
When I was young, I would recite the National Anthem every day before class began. The entire class stood up, and I put my right hand across my heart, feeling the steady beat of life pumping through the veins.
‘Land of the free, home of the brave,' I recited those words, I would repeat it, letting its meaning wash over me, trying to understand the full meaning and history behind the phrase.
‘Land of the free, home of the brave’. I let the words slowly roll off my tongue every morning I stood up and saluted the flag. Those words resonated with me deeply and made me stand a little bit taller.
As I’ve gotten older, I've seen that this land is not a peaceful one. The United States is a violent nation, always has been, and we shouldn't be surprised that this tradition carries on today. The fairy tale I’ve been told about my homeland is forever shattered, reveling in its shards of glass, a bloody finger pointing accusatory towards me.
The blood dried up under our fingernails belonging to those we slaughtered and pushed under our feet in submission while speaking the same words of freedom that led a college aged kid to place a flower at the end of a barrel of a soldier’s gun, who would not learn to stop worrying and love the bomb. From Ferguson, to Ohio, Oakland, Liberty City, New York, Egypt, to the Gaza Strip, countless and countless cities and bodies standing defiant against bodies protected in riot gear, armed with nothing but the simple demand to let them live.
These same words of freedom has also led our government to spy on us, weighing our fates in secret criminal courts, and allowing public servants to beat us into submission anytime we dare speak our mind.
As the childlike naïveté of America has shattered, I struggle to answer what it means to be free. Freedom for me is the ability to make your own decisions, to walk down the street in peace, to let your child walk to school without wondering if they will make back alive, to laugh with a group of friends, to love freely and openly without condemnation or fear.
That’s what it means to be free. To stand tall when you they want you to crawl. To tilt your head up at the sky when you were programmed to eat the dirt under their feet. Freedom is standing defiant and unwavering, knowing that even if your knees shake, you won't lose your balance, you won't fall, because you've tasted the dirt, you've conformed and contorted yourself into something more digestible until you've lost sight of oneself and fitted yourself into such a small cage, that now, wide in the open, expanding your lungs to take in the air around you, realizing that you could never make yourself that small again.
ART is unique to it's creator. ART forms such as music, poetry, art, and dance are the true liberation of the mind, body and soul. As an artist growing up, I struggled to find comic book heroes of color. 30 years later, it's still an epidemic that continues to plague society. Motivated by this, I set out to create this video series I call "Heroes of Color" which celebrates the outstanding achievements of people of color.